Lottery winners are also celebrities, from the moment they win that jackpot their names will be seen online, in newspapers and sometimes even television. People around the world will quickly get to know everything about them. Where they live, where they work and how much they’ve won. But do all winners really want their personal information out there for anyone to read? While some might enjoy it, others can’t imagine anything worse. So can winners remain anonymous when they win the lottery? Let’s find out together.
Is there an industry standard for lottery anonymity?
The lottery you play will determine whether or not you can stay anonymous if you win. While there is no worldwide lottery standard, some lotteries require winners to publicly claim their jackpots to comply with the laws of the country or state where the ticket was purchased.
Why is winner information publicly available?
The lotteries who do require winners to publicly collect their jackpot, also require basic information including name, city and jackpot total to be made public.
While some players might not like their information being publically available, lotteries have very good reasons for doing this. Lotteries believe in transparency, by publishing the names of lottery winners, players around the world can see how ordinary people from various backgrounds can win big and change their lives.
Publishing the names and basic information of winners is more than a law for some lotteries, it is their beacon of hope to people around the world.
Are there lotteries out there that allow you to claim your winnings anonymously?
Oh yes! And some of the world’s favourite lotteries are among them like EuroJackpot, EuroMillions, SuperEnalotto, and La Primitiva! So if you want to keep your identity a mystery, you can take your chances with lotto luck and play these games on PlayHugeLottos.com today.
Does the public want to remain anonymous?
When the Powerball jackpot hit a record-breaking $1.58 billion in January 2016, various polls around the world asked the public what they would do if they won? Many responded saying they would “keep it a secret”.
So how can you remain anonymous?
Anonymous lottery winners are just as famous. While the public might not know their name, their lottery jackpot is often mentioned in lottery conversations. Like the New Hampshire winner who walked away with a $487 million Powerball jackpot in July 2016.
Lottery officials say that the New Hampshire winner claimed their prize through the Robin Egg 2016 Nominee Trust which was facilitated by a law firm. This is a common jackpot collection strategy used by winners who would like to stay anonymous. This is also called a “blind trust”, referring to how personal information is blind to the public.
The winner that sparked the conversation around anonymity
In January 2018 a New Hampshire woman was the sole winner of a $560 million Powerball jackpot. In an effort to secure and validify her win, she signed the back of her lottery ticket. Little did she know that her state law required her to make her identity public.
When this winner realised that the new size of her bank account would become public information, she quickly took steps to change that.
This winner filed a lawsuit asking for her privacy to remain exactly that, private. In her request, she mentioned that “she is a long-time resident of New Hampshire and is an engaged community member. She wishes to continue this work and the freedom to walk into a grocery store or attend public events without being known or targeted as the winner of a half-billion dollars”.
Not too long after that, in March 2018, a New Hampshire judge ruled that she could receive her jackpot while remaining private. Adding that if the winner’s identity were to “be revealed, she will be subject[ed] to an alarming amount of harassment, solicitation and unwanted communications."
If this winner knew about blind trusts, we’re sure she would have signed her ticket with the name of a fund instead of her own name.
What this means for future winners
There is a good chance that this case will be used as a basis for any cases in the future, because as the polls show, there are many people who would rather remain anonymous than put themselves in the spotlight.
What would you do if you won close to half a billion dollars? Comment and let us know below.